- Category: Business and Economy
- Published on Friday, 30 April 2010 08:55
- Written by BusinessDay
- Hits: 1658
Stakeholders in the Nigerian capital market yesterday unanimously moved in support of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in its decision to be fully involved in the appointment of a new substantive director general for the Nigerian Stock Exchange in June this year.
BusinessDay had on Tuesday exclusively reported that the SEC in a letter to the NSE directed the Council of the Exchange to fast track the process of appointing a new DG and other principal officers by giving a June 30, 2010 deadline. SEC also indicated in the letter that whoever emerges as the DG would have to be cleared by the Commission.
Market operators who spoke to BusinessDay last night were of the opinion that SEC’s action is appropriate and in the best interest of the Nigerian capital market. “I support the position of the SEC, they need to clear the principal officers of the NSE because it is the proper thing to do,” Dipo Aina, a senior stockbroker said.
According to him, SEC remains the apex regulator of the market and also registers stock exchanges, noting that the action is similar to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) rule on the appointment of directors and principal officers in the banking industry.
Victor Ogiemwonyi, CEO, Partnership Investments Limited, shared this view and added that as the apex regulator, SEC would have to ensure that a fit and proper person emerges as the DG of the Exchange. “As the apex regulator, even though the president and the Council of the NSE have a primary responsibility for hiring a CEO, SEC will have a more important supervisory role. There is a need to find a competent and market-friendly candidate.”
A market analyst who preferred anonymity noted that change at the NSE is long overdue adding. “In this age and time of corporate governance, a lot of things ought to pass through the regulatory agencies.” He explained that since the CBN had started the financial sector reforms it became imperative for other regulatory agencies, like the SEC and National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) to fix the problems in their sectors so that the economy can move forward.
Similarly, Sunny Nwosu, a shareholder in several quoted companies, said all that SEC needed to do was to ask for the succession plan of the NSE and treat such accordingly. “There is no doubt that SEC is the apex regulatory body of the market; SEC has a right to ask for the succession plan of the NSE and treat it accordingly. The two organisations need to work together in the interest of the market and investors generally,” Nwosu said.
It would be recalled that SEC had in the letter to the NSE directed that as part of measures to ensure transparency, the positions for the new DG and other principal officers must be widely advertised to attract a broad range of qualified Nigerians from both within Nigeria and abroad. Besides, SEC’s new rule empowers it to ’clear and approve’ appointments of executive directors of market operators.
“This is to ensure that only fit and proper persons run the affairs of the capital market institutions,” Arunma Oteh, director general of SEC said.
Oteh who spoke with journalists yesterday in
The Commission is also seeking to play a final role of clearing any candidate that is shortlisted by the Council of the NSE before he or she is appointed and announced to the public.
The current DG, Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, had announced that she would retire in November this year when she is expected to clock 60 years.